Hilary M. Schor is a professor of English, comparative literature, and law at the University of Southern California. She is the author, most recently, of Curious Subjects: Women and the Trials of Realism (Oxford University Press, forthcoming), and her scholarly interests include Victorian literature and culture, contemporary film and narrative theory, and feminist studies.
Schor’s current research focuses on Victorian literature and law, beginning in the era of early-Victorian law reform. It draws on legal and political history, moving forward through the Victorian novel, theories of discipline and contract drawn from Bentham and Foucault, and feminist and legal theory, and ending with contemporary film, including The Queen and The King’s Speech. Where critics have assumed that the Victorian novel provides the spirit to oppose the letter of the law, this project will break down many of our easy distinctions between law and literature, taking seriously not only legal fictions but also the ways that novels themselves teach us to “read for the law.”
Schor has received research grants from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and the American Council of Learned Societies. She received her BA from Scripps College and her PhD from Stanford University and has published Scheherezade in the Marketplace: Elizabeth Gaskell and the Victorian Novel (Oxford University Press, 1992) and Dickens and the Daughter of the House (Cambridge University Press, 1999), along with articles on Jane Austen and narrators in film, George Eliot, Jews and other “strangers,” and Victorian show trials.